East Liberty, PA
Explorer | 40 pts
If you are up for a gentle but pretty trail ride with lots of good natural/historical interest, this is worth the trip. We went from Nanty Glo to Dillstown at a gentle pace with several stops in about 2 1/2 hours. It's about 12 miles each way, but the trail has been expanded and we are interested in seeing other sections.
The Eliza Furnace is really cool for anyone interested in early industrial revolution technology. The majority of the trail runs through shaded woods alongside the various branches of Blacklick Creek. For the environmentalist this is a must ride, seeing first hand the devastating effects of acid mine drainage. The main stem of Blacklick creek is bright orange and completely dead. Then you bike by the South Branch (which is not totally healthy but MUCH better) to see a green world with many fish. Along the way you cross several very healthy tributaries, tiny brook trout streams apparently teeming with fish. A reminder that what we do has absolute impact on the health of our world. Vintondale is also undertaking a massive project to use wetlands to mitigate their part of the problem. I hope all the other sources soon follow, this could be a gem of a watershed.
Nice amenities all along with rest stops and historical markers. Enjoy the ride.